Thursday, February 28, 2008

Chunk Funk

I started this blog so I could be completely honest,  so that by writing these things down for all of my family and friends to see, I can be held responsible for my actions, choices and feelings.

 

I've been trying to avoid this next admission for a whole week:  I'm falling off the wagon. 

 

Ever since I saw the doctor last week, I've gone into "Fuck It" mode.  When my friends were in town this weekend, I ate everything in front of me – bad Chinese food, high-calorie tropical drinks, biscuits and gravy, bacon cheeseburgers, fries, nachos, biscuits and gravy AGAIN - even though I had planned to do otherwise.  I haven't worked out all week, mostly because I feel awful but partly just to give up, if only for this week.  I pigged out on 3 Dunkin' Donuts crullers on Tuesday night when they were offering free coffee in response to Starbucks's nationwide shutdown for training.  I've made about 5 diet root beer floats (with Ben & Jerry's Vanilla Ice Cream) over the past 4 nights.  I've dined out for lunch every day this week (Subway, a calzone, Chipotle Burrito Bol, and a big muffuletta sandwich today + 2 cannoli and some layer cake made with cannoli filling).  I just can't seem to stop.

 

And I don't feel good about it.  This food makes me feel like crap, of course, but I'm still bingeing.  I think I'm doing it mostly to get back at my doctor for suggesting bariatric surgery.  After all, right after my visit with him I went to the beef stand across the street for a polish sausage and cheese fries.  I didn't eat it all.  I just wanted something bad. 

 

I've been seriously considering gastric banding over the past week, looking up local surgeons, checking my insurance website to see if they're approved providers.  I even signed up for the next information session at NMH, which isn't until May 20.  Trust me, I would have gone to the one in March and April, but they were already booked solid.  And you have to go to one of those in order to be considered a candidate.

 

The only thing I need to do is contact my insurance company to see if it would be covered….but I'm afraid what they'll say.  If they say it's not, then it's not.  Too bad.  Try something else.  But then again, if they say it's not, then I think I would look into financing it myself.  I mean, it's an investment in my health that's roughly the cost of a car.  Why not?  I'm young enough to pay it off.

 

If it is covered by insurance, then that's the scary part.  It's easy for me to put off making a big financial decision for another year; but if it is covered, that means I can move sooner, have less time to make excuses for not doing it.  Does that make sense?  I don't know how anyone can understand what I'm thinking anymore.
 
Back to this bingeing thing:  it's scary.  I think I'm doing it because if bariatric surgery is an option, then why not go all out while I can?  Also, it seems like I do it every time someone tells me how to manage my body.  Huh.  Guess that makes sense.  That was my way at getting back at Mom for putting all the pressure on me to lose weight as a kid.  But the thing is that now, I'm an adult – I want to be healthy.  I want to eat right.  I like eating right.  So why do I lash out just because someone else wants the same for me?

 

It's all so confusing.  I just feel like I'm twelve years old again, riding in the passenger seat of Mom's Mercury after a bad weigh-in at the Phen-Fen doctor, facing the window so she can't see me cry.

 

Will I ever grow up?

 

So there's that,

 

Laura

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Tales from the Dripped

The worst thing about being sick and sniffly is the raw, red nose from all the blowing and the Kleenex and the wiping. I don't know how to make it better.

I moisturized. It stings.

I dabbed a cold, wet Kleenex on it. It feels good, then it stings.

I dabbed a warm, wet Kleenex on it. It feels good, then it stings.

I didn't wear makeup. No big difference, except I probably looked pretty beastly all day.

And now I'm holding an icy cold beverage glass to my nose. This. is. heaven. But heaven can't last forever - just ask Jesus.

I'm not making any sense. I also have this big red dry patch of skin under my right eye - I'm fucking falling apart here. Hopefully one more night of heavy NyQuil-induced slumber will do me right. I need to bring my A game on Thursday night to prepare for Dad's visit!

Ummm...I just heard Ryan Seacrest brag about Randy Jackson's shoe size on American Idol. 13 1/2? Please. Meyers have got bigger feet than that. Dad's a 15-16. Shoot, isn't my brother-in-law a 20 or something? I don't know, he's some kind of Shaq proportions. Stop bragging, dawg.

So there's that,

Laura

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Thag you bery buch.

I'm sick.

I took a bath-shower last night with my bathroom door shut, trying to breathe in the warm air. It was very pleasant. Problem is, when I'm not doing that, it feels like I'm breathing through a dense honeycomb in my chest.

I woke up this morning with a dry mouth that was glued shut at the lips. Disgusting.

Plus, there was a snowstorm last night. I slept in a little this morning just in case the office was closed. It wasn't.

I go out my front door, and the snowy wind blows my purse and tennis shoes in the air. My wallet falls out.

I struggled against the wind to get to my bus. It rolled away just as I reached the door. I hailed a cab.

I met with a coworker to discuss some items for my upcoming course. She got paranoid when I told her I was "a little" sick and demanded that I not touch a thing in her office. I felt like a leper.

Now it hurts to breathe. My ears ache. I'm sore. I don't want to be sick this week.

So there's that,

Laura

(PS - Do you know where my subject line comes from? A very famous character from a very famous book said this line when he had a cold. Other books from this author were recently made into a successful movie franchise.)

Friday, February 22, 2008

Hover Craft

I don't know if I ever mentioned this, but I like to be clean.

I wash my hands every time I come in from outside, use the restroom, and practically every time I touch something new. I posted about that before. I bathe twice a day for both hygeine and comfort - a shower in the morning to wake up, a bath or shower at night to put me to sleep - and to play my part in harming the environment by wasting energy and putting phosphates down the drain. I figure I gotta make up for my tiny energy bills and use of public transportation sometime. To hell with paying down my carbon debt - I'mma rack it up where I can! I'm drinking out of styrofoam right now!

Anyway, I'm clean. I know I can't trust the same of other people, and I'm smart enough to know that I can get germs anywhere. Again, I use public transportation - can you say sticky metal poles, hobo-stench, corn chips and used newspapers? Can you say it three times fast?

Do you realize the kind of stuff that you collect on your shoes and bring into your home?

Do you know where your cash has been? Do you know where it was on the night of October 28, 2005?

So I'm not going to freak out about, say, putting my butt on a toilet seat. I will freak out about using a toilet seat that somebody has pissed on whilst "hovering" to avoid germs.

This is what I discovered in the office bathroom today. I go into my favorite stall (the handicap cove), examine the seat for standard dealbreakers like splashback and errant pubic hairs, and find a seat dotted with yellow piss. What the hell?! There is some woman in my office parading around like a professional grown-up, but spraying toilet seats in private. I normally trust everyone always, but this made me seriously question the morality of my female coworkers.

I'm not gonna try to guess who did it, but I'm going to assume it wasn't someone I work with directly. I like them all too much. But I'mma keep an eagle eye on the women across the floor.

What kind of person do you have to be to commit such a lowly act? I mean, at least wipe the seat off - if not for your self pride, but to keep up the illusion that toilet seats are clean and friendly real estate.

The thing that gets me is this person is so obsessed with sharing germs, yet she will pee all over a seat like some animal and walk away feeling superior to others for not sharing germs. Fuck you! My germs aren't good enough for you, but you expect me to slosh around in yours.

Look - I understand a fear of a gas station toilet seat; you never know what kind of trash is going to roll off the interstate and dispel their waste. And those people don't care how they leave the restroom - there's yellow stains in the toilet bowl, rusty specks on the wall, and always, always water (or some fluid) on the floor - it's like a vacation from responsibility. I've cleaned them. I know.

But this is the restroom you share with coworkers. You touch the same elevator buttons, eat off the same bagel tray, use the same sponge to wash your dishes in the kitchen, your Tupperware bumps uglies with strange lunchboxes in the fridge. We all work for a respectable organization, and presumably we're all good people. Let it go...just sit on the seat.

Furthermore - and I'm no doctor here - but your ass isn't your hand. You're not going to wipe your face with your ass or type up a report with your ass or open doors with your ass. Your hands do all that stuff, and that's why you wash them after using the restroom. Your ass on the other hand, is immediately wrapped up into underwear and pants/whathaveyou. As far as I see it, your ass is the most protected part of your body; if you have to share a toilet a couple of times a day, so what? You're gonna take a shower later.

Argh!!!! Get over yourself! You're not gonna die from ass exposure!

Just...just stop peeing all over the goddamn seats, you filthy savages.

So there's that,

Laura

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Lap Dance

I'm a bad patient.

I had a doctor's appointment yesterday, but I was supposed to get a fasting blood test last month so that we could discuss my thyroid health. I kept putting it off until it was too late, but I went to my normal appointment anyway to waste the guy's time.

I was looking forward to my weigh-in, hoping I was within 2 pounds of last week's successful digits. Wrong. Waaayyyy wrong. In-the-wrong-way wrong.

I showed a gain of seven (7) pounds since Friday. B'guh? How is that even possible? I ate my regular diet, excercised. I dined out more than usual, 3 times - VD, Friday lunch and Sunday dinner - didn't clean my plate on all occasions. Even so, with everything else normal, how can I gain THAT MUCH in such a short time?

I'm kicking myself the whole time I'm waiting in the examination room. I'm thinking about every morsel that went into my mouth, like someone recounting their sexual exploits before hearing the result of their AIDS test. I feel like such fucking punk - I wanted to show progress at this appointment.

So I cry. I'm trying to explain myself to the doctor, swearing that I was 7 pounds lighter just 5 days ago, coming across like the guy with the singing and dancing frog on that WB cartoon: "I got this frog in this box that sings and dances! Only for me! You gotta believe me!"



The doctor looks at me helplessly and asks if I've considered bariatric surgery.

God damnit. He's asked me this on nearly every visit. He insists that the studies involving weight loss medication aren't conclusive. My first time with him, he told me point blank that he'd recommend surgery before pills.

"Ugh...sniff...yes I have, but I don't want excess skin, and I like being creative with food." The thought of parsing out my meals in liquids and proteins over several weeks does not interest me in the least.

"Well, what would disappoint you more: failing to lose weight and remaining this way, or dealing with excess skin?"

Argh.

So I left the office promising to get my blood tested over the weekend, and thinking about bariatric surgery. I was rolling along being all positive and shit, and then he tells me this business again.

I don't know, is it worth considering at the end of the year? I vowed last year to lose this weight, and I remained the same. Is the same stuff going to keep happening over and over again until I will pass up any opportunity to live like a "normal" woman in her twenties? I'm 26 - I have spent 75% of my life being chubby, overweight or obese. I don't want to waste anymore time!

If anything, I can consider - again - the less-invasive Lap-Band procedure, which will allow me to lose weight gradually, excercising to prevent loose skin. What if I just start taking the steps toward approval now and when the decision comes down, perhaps I'll have been more successful in my weight loss. My head's just swimming.

But...I watched TLC last night and saw a heartbreaking show about someone with real problems - Half Man, Half Tree:




http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2007/11/12/wtree112.xml

So who the fuck am I to worry?

So there's that,

Laura

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Magic Beans

On Monday night I made ribollito - a hearty Italian bean soup. I haven't made it since I moved out of my first Chicago apartment in 2006; I know this because I offered Dad the leftovers when he came to help me move. He scooped it out of the big bowl with a plastic cup and drank it cold. I was hoping he would savor the experience and commend me on such a delicious meal. When that didn't happen, I eagerly asked him, "Did you like it?"

"Yeah," he shrugged. Then quickly nodding his head, "It's good shit." Then, in tradition, he bent over to sniff the bowl as if to examine it for signs of shit. His eyes lit up and he laughed in a way that implied, "get it?"

I got it. That's his oldest trick in the book - saying something's good shit, then playing the straight man and sniffing the food in alarm and distrust. That's one of Dad's finest performance art pieces. That and starting "alleyway knife fights" in the kitchen...and playing Spock by asking logical questions in response to colloquialisms. Example:

Colloquialism: It'll make you shit like a goose.
Spock response: Why would one endeavor to defecate like an aquatic fowl?

God love him.

Anyway, I had a big craving for it last week and decided to cook up another batch. I saw it made a few years ago on Everyday Italian, but I bumped up the beans and veggies, dialed down the oil, and replaced the Herbs de Provence with basil. I hate Herbs de Provence - with its inclusion of lavender, it's way too floral for me. The key to this beast is a big parmesan rind - it dissolves slowly in the simmering soup, thickening the broth and making it slightly creamy.

Ribollito
Serves 5

1 Tbsp olive oil
1 whole yellow onion, diced
2 carrots, peeled and diced
4 oz pancetta or bacon, diced
1 Tbsp tomato paste
1 24 oz can diced tomatoes
2 cans white beans (navy, canneloni, whatever), drained and rinsed
1 lb frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry (fold spinach into a tea towel or good paper towels and squeeze)
3 c chicken stock
1 big parmesan rind, chopped into 3 large pieces (or use big chunks of parm)
Salt, pepper, red pepper flake to taste
1/4 c fresh basil

In a large pot, saute the carrots, onion and pancetta in olive oil until the meat is crispy and the onions have browned. This may take some time; if the pan is crowded the veggies and meat will steam, which sucks. This happened to me, so I just cranked up the heat and kept an eye on it until the water dissipated and the fat really started to render and do it's work. I think it took about 15-20 minutes. Just do your other food prep in the meantime.

Add tomato paste and stir until veggies are coated. Stir in canned tomatoes, using a spoon to break up the brown bits on the bottom of the pan. Add beans, spinach, chicken stock and parmesan rind. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer, cooking for at least 30 minutes. The tomatoey broth should look milky from the cheese. Add salt and pepper, red pepper flakes to taste. Before serving, stir in the chopped basil.

Serve over toasted bread (whole wheat!), topped with grated parmesan cheese and a touch of olive oil.

Leftovers: It's my personal belief that a dish like this is even better with a fried egg on top. Or poach an egg in it: reheat a serving of the soup in a skillet. Make a little dip in the center and add a whole egg. Cover and simmer until egg is cooked. It's kind of like "Eggs in Purgatory" or eggs simmered in tomato sauce. You can also reheat with chopped chicken. Bone App!

So there's that,

Laura

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Fw: Chow

----- Forwarded by Laura R. Meyer/Chicago/ on 02/19/2008 09:07 AM -----

Laura R. Meyer/Chicago/
02/19/2008 09:07 AM

To: justin.thompson@XXX.com
cc:

Subject: Chow

Hey, thanks four yakkin with me the other day. Eye kneaded it. Eye red you're blog - can Eye send you're mom a card, two?

Eye saw that your getting tired with you're food variety. When your hear this weak, we'll halve too due sum brainstorming together about fun foods.

If ewe halve knot noticed, I'm halving fun with homophones today. Its hard.

Chow,

Laura R. Meyer

Monday, February 18, 2008

Quickly -

Corner Bakery is sending me a $50 gift card to apologize for that piece of plastic in my food.  The regional director has been trying to get me on the phone for a week now, but we keep missing each other.  She just left me a message apologizing again!
 
In some cases, it pays to complain.
 
So there's that,
 
Laura

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Break Your Eggs.

I made one of my favorite Sunday breakfasts this morning, and I thought it would make an interesting recipe post.

I like eggs.  Used to hate them, but the more I made them my way, the more I began to love them.  This is pretty much a basic scramble recipe, but you can add different things to the mix.  That's the beauty of scrambled eggs - you can't eff 'em up.

Rainbow Scramble
Serves One...sigh.

2 Tbsp Light Butter
2 Whole Eggs
1-2 Tbsp Skim Milk
Dash(es) of Hot Sauce
Salt and Pepper
1 clove garlic, minced
1/3 cup finely chopped multicolored bell peppers (I buy them frozen.  It's cheaper.  But if you have red peppers on hand, use 'em.)
3-4 leaves Fresh Basil, cut into ribbons
1 oz grated hard cheese (Parmesan, Asiago, etc.  I got some piave on sale yesterday, and it's salty and tasty and special!)
2 pieces high fiber bread

Melt 1 Tbsp of light butter in a nonstick pan.  Add the garlic and peppers and saute over medium heat until cooked through.  If you use frozen peppers, cook them until the excess moisture has evaporated, but they still have bright color.

Meanwhile, in a cup whisk together eggs, milk, salt, pepper and hot sauce.  Don't you love hot sauce?  Toast your bread.  I don't have a toaster, so I popped them in the oven which took forever.  Add the eggs to the pan and scramble vigorously with a spatula. 

Just before eggs are fully cooked, grate your cheese into the pan and add basil.  Mix it all up.  Add S&P to taste, maybe more hot sauce.  Serve in a bowl with buttered toast that's been cut into halves. 

Enjoy with coffee and a bad VH1 reality show.

So there's that,

Laura

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Again with this...

I swear I'll respond to this sometime.
 

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Hiring Network Online - Victoria Secret - Sales Associate <careers@hiringnetworkonline.com>
Date: 14 Feb 2008 11:54:33 -0500
Subject: Interested in being a Sales Associate for Victoria Secret?
To: laurarmeyer@gmail.com

Dear LAURA ,

We're looking for that perfect employee to fill the Sales Associate vacancy we currently have open. The resume you have on the Web stood out from all others. Your retail training and background make you a great match for our opportunity. I have included some basic info about the opening.

Victoria Secret

Sales Associate

Excellent Income with long term career growth

Candidates should be self starters with a desire to grow within their field. If you are interested in learning more about the vacancy, or if you would like to apply, please click on the link provided. If the link doesn't work, you can also copy and paste the link into another browser and access the Web site that way. The link takes you to the application page that also includes a full job description and other detailed information.

http://findonlinehiringnetwork.com/cmanager2.aspx?em=laurarmeyer@gmail.com&id=aaxxeeww7_kkklokoijjhbhjgh788998789bhgcffgbig011520083ser23&rd=718&j=6565409

Once your application is processed, a member of our HR team will contact to you to schedule an interview. Please allow about 48 hours to be contacted. We're looking forward to speaking with you soon.

Sincerely,
Keith Grayson
Sr. Recruiter, HR Division

 
So there's that,
 
Laura

Who Needs Chocolate?

I lost 5 pounds since my last weigh-in on January 24!  Ba-ba-doo-bow-bow!
 
So there's that,
 
Laura

Happy VD

Happy Valentine's Day everybody!
 
I'm trying to be positive about mylack of romantic commitment this time of year, so I'm not going to worry about it.  After all, I'm better off without some of the guys I dated last year.  Highlights in reverse:
 
  • Guy with Asperger's Syndrome who wanted to "be the baby spoon."
  • Sweet, funny, improv bicycle boy who enjoys recreational drugs.
  • Soccer playing accountant with great abs and poor, nervous conversation skills.
  • All the rest - who fall into the fat fetishist category.
Plus, I could also be part of an annoying couple like the one on the bus this morning.  The guy sat next to me, his girl sat in front of him (poor babies couldn't get a seat together), and he leaned forward the whole time to wrap his arms around her and whisper in her ear.  I just kept the iPod in and my paper high, but it couldn't be ignored.  They had matching bright green hats.  When the person in her seat left, he moved to set next to her.  I love this now - I think they were arguing.  He kept leaning in and insisting something to her.  And get this - he was French!  Curly, greasy hair, stubble, searing brown eyes - I had a right to hate this guy.
 
When I got off the bus, I ran into a coworker who was riding a few seats to the front.  I told her I sat next to the annoying couple, and she said, "The one with the matching hats?  Yeah, they were awful.  I thought he was assaulting her at first."  Then some random gay guy chimed in, "Happy Valentine's Day," and we all laughed and kept making fun of them.  I love bitter people.
 
Yeah, I'm better off.
 
So there's that,
 
Laura

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Fw: Membership - Thinking of a Change

----- Forwarded by Laura R. Meyer/Chicago/XXX on 02/12/2008 09:03 AM -----

Laura R. Meyer/Chicago/XXX
02/11/2008 05:06 PM

To: info@crunch.com
cc:

Subject: Membership - Thinking of a Change

Good Evening,

I'm a very active obese woman, and I get regular cardio every day of the week, whether it's getting on the stairclimber or elliptical for 30 minutes over my lunch break, occasionally walking the 6 miles home from work, or walking long distances on weekends. I'm self-motivated, keep a dedicated food journal, and am in good general health - normal blood pressure, enviable cholesterol. My doctor tells me I have the health of Michael Jordan, except for the obesity and hypothyroidism. I've been a long-time member of Curves for about 5 years, but my nearest location is in a pretty seedy part of Uptown, and since the peak of winter I've reduced my attendance to weekend days.

Trouble is, I want to incorporate weight training into my routine, but I don't know where to begin or how to stay focused. And I hate gyms. Not the equipment so much as clientele who see them as meat markets - women who wear makeup to workout; sleazy weightlifters; and all of those who stand in judgment of a person like me who looks like she doesn't eat healthy or make the effort. Needless to say, I'm pretty bitter about my experience with franchise gyms. Even some staff have a tendency to not take me seriously: when I went to check out the Lincoln Park Bally's in 2005, I had to wait around for a staff person to even talk to me, then I was eventually pressured by a salesman who made me feel guilty for having my hang-ups about this kind of atmosphere and my inability to commit to a contract on the spot - when I just came for a tour. That's exactly why I didn't sign up then, and why I left in tears.

I don't mean to sound so judgmental of gyms, but when you spend a lifetime in my body, you are treated very very differently in normal settings - from the bus, to a restaurant, to a gym. Hell, I get a sideways glance at restaurants when I request egg whites or that my entree not be cooked with additional oil, as if imposing on my server will make a dent in my condition.

In short, I know I need to lose weight, and building muscle will help me burn more calories. But I don't know how to utilize the free weights in my office gym to their full advantage; and I don't want to end up looking like some overtoned, hairy-kneed Helga from the Soviet Bloc.

I'm asking about a Crunch membership because this seems like a legitimate gym that's embracing - or at least marketing to - all kinds. Is that what I can expect from your staff? As far as judgmental clientele are concerned, I've come to not care about that. But I don't want to have another Lincoln Park Bally's experience with a member of your staff. What are your membership fees? Could I work out at any Crunch in the city, or am I limited to one location?

I've lost 100 pounds in the past, and I'm sure I can do it again. I just need to get over this hurdle, and I need a big change in my routine. Can I expect something new with Crunch?

Thanks for your time,

Laura R. Meyer

Monday, February 11, 2008

I Think

- and this is a big think - I'm going to start walking to and/or from work on a daily basis when it gets warmer and there's more daylight.  Make like Jared the Subway guy.
 
 
Everyday People
 
I already walk home from work occasionally, about once a month.  It's nice to see the shore and listen to my iPod.  It's about six miles, one way, and I can do it in about 90 minutes.  I think it will be a battle committing to it in the morning, when I hate to lose precious sleep-in time.  Maybe I'll start working it in gradually on evenings and see where that goes.
 
I don't plan on doing any theater for awhile, until I get a handle on how performances can affect my job schedule.  So I need a new hobby.  I've been looking into marathon walking, but I don't plan on looking like one of those jerks with flinging arms.  I can do distance without looking like a jerk.  I've been thinking about spending time on Saturdays trying to tackle parts of the Chicago marathon trail.
 
I'm just putting this out there, so I'm sorry if I'm rambling.
 
Manda, do you want to think about traveling to do marathons together, with you running?  There are really cool ones all over the country.  It might be a fun bonding thing!
 
I'll let you all know how this develops.
 
So there's that,
 
Laura

Friday, February 8, 2008

I Don't Know What's Worse:

Grocery shopping at 2:00 pm on Sunday during the rush, or grocery shopping at 2:00 pm on a weekday with the jobless and the elderly.
 
After today, I think it's the latter.
 
After my tooth removal today, I totally could have gone back to work - it wasn't as bad as everyone made it out to be.  Instead I decided to stick to my 1/2 personal day plan, and pamper myself.  I walked several blocks to the grocery store to fill up on instant mashed potatoes, stovetop stuffing, soup and yogurt.  I thought I would be in for a treat; nobody would be in Jewel at 2 pm on a Friday!
 
 
Wrong.
 
The parking lot was packed.  The place was crawling with people in walkers, wheelchairs, windsuits and hair-dos.  Dear. God.  I made the mistake of getting a shopping cart, because I couldn't get that thing through a single aisle without waiting for some gumming octegenarian to figure out what they were looking for.  Considering that I was in the market for the same things today, I couldn't really avoid them.
 
In the soup aisle, this white-haired woman wandered right up behind me while I was looking for a decent sale on instant potatoes.  Instead of saying something, she just kept on my ass until I got out of the way.  Then she went ahead of me, and when I moved my cart up the aisle a little bit, she started poking around it looking for food on the shelf behind.  When I saw her try to move it (my purse and coat were in there!), I did what I always do:  pull it aggressively out of the way and fling it to the other side of the aisle.  I think my point was made.
 
Oh hell, I would have done the same thing if this was a 30 year old.  People always expect me to get out of their way, and the few times I try to do the same, nobody does it for me.  Roar!  I'll try to be inconsiderate too; I could live longer.
 
Then I was comparing high-fiber yogurts when this tall old man in a stocking cap came looking over my shoulder.  "Oh, I heard those things are good.  They're on sale.  I think I should get some.  You're a good shopper."  Ahhh.  AHHHHH!!!! 
 
If there's nothing I hate on this earth, there will always be old men (that I'm not related to, of course).  I fucking hate old men!  And I can give or take old women.  It just depends on the kind.
 
I'm just really trying to digest this all right now.  Seriously?  I felt like I was in a Jewel-Osco filled with zombies...and the occasional college student.  These two girls walked by and said, "It's so bad, because I'm sooo hungry.  It's bad, this is the worst place to be when you're hungry.  I'm sooooo hungry.  I'm hungry."
 
EAT SOMETHING!
 
All right.  I'mma take some pills and watch tacky judge shows.
 
Guess I'm a lot like the elderly after all.
 
So there's that,
 
Laura

A Cautionary Tale

I think I'm done with carefree dining out:
 
February 8, 2008 

 

Corner Bakery Home Office
ATTN:  Customer Service
12700 Park Central Drive
Suite 1300
Dallas, TX 75251

Dear Sir or Madam: 

I visited your store at 676 N. St. Clair Street in Chicago just 45 minutes ago, where I ordered a Swiss Oatmeal, which is my all-time favorite Corner Bakery product.

I dove into my oatmeal when I came back to my office, and a few bites in, I crunched down on the item I have attached below.  At first I thought it might be a bit of apple core or stem, and I thought I could probably just crunch through it and swallow with no harm.  After a couple more chews, I realized this thing wasn't getting any smaller.  So I pulled this spiky plastic bit out of my mouth.  You'll notice I didn't clean it off; I wanted your experience with it to be as authentic as mine.

Needless to say, I was and am pretty upset.  Imagine if I swallowed this?  Worse yet, imagine if a child had consumed something like this?  

I threw my receipt away in the restaurant (since it was huge, and I didn't feel like jamming it into my wallet), but if you want to do the research, my pick up number was 234 and I made my order at around 9:15 am on 2/8/08. 

I'm a fairly regular customer of Corner Bakery, coming in once or twice a week.  I even had dinner there last night because I stayed at work late.  I just don't think I can ever eat there again.  I'll feel much safer making Swiss Oatmeal at home.

Please do what you have to do.

Sincerely,

 
Laura R. Meyer

So there's that,
 
Laura

Just Saying...

This tooth that I'm getting cracked off? Umm...every time I see it in dental x-rays, it looks like a big pair of balls. A big pair of balls swinging in toward my back molar.

I have balls teeth.

And one more thing...for you.




So there's that,

Laura

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Crack One Off

I'm going to get one of my wisdom teeth removed tomorrow at 11:30.  Hopefully doing so will ease me of some of this intellectual burden I've been carting around.  Wish me luck!
 
So there's that,
 
Laura

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

I'm a Subscriber

You know that song by Destiny's Child, "Survivor"? I know you do.


I'm a survivor (what), I'm not gonna give up (what), I'm not gon' stop (what), I'm gonna work harder (what), etc.....


Anyway, I got my first subscription magazine in the mail yesterday. Well, the first since college, the first to my own place in Chicago. So all night and day I've been singing, "I'm a subscriber, I got Real Simple, It's gonna give me, good tips on livin,'" which sounds really lame, but you don't know how much I love this magazine.





I love watching PBS home & cooking shows on Saturday afternoons. It just so happened that the lifestyle show, Real Simple, is the bridge between The Woodwright's Shop and Christina Cooks - a vegan cooking show, which is interesting enough but not my favorite. So I watched and enjoyed its laidback cooking, home, fashion and living segments. It's like Martha Stewart Living and Everyday Food (a Martha Stewart PBS joint) without the closeted, anal-retentive hosts.

I forgot that RS started as a magazine until I saw it on the racks at my grocery store. I bought my first issue in November, which I read cover to cover during an extensive bubble bath. Since then, I make it a point to look for the new issue every time I'm at the store. Last month I decided to subscribe, and now I will have the fresh beats delivered to my home every month! Squeeee!

The focus of this little empire is to bring class back to modern living, kind of like a practical Emily Post. They give you tips on how to better organize your home, what clothing staples will last you a lifetime, how to make more informed purchases on everything from cookware to produce. And there's always a sweet little section asking readers how they live one aspect of their life to the fullest. I think February's topic included how couples keep their marriages alive, and there was a nice piece in which a wife wrote her husband - and vice versa - with thoughts on their 15-year-old marriage.

I don't know. You just need to read this stuff. Check out http://www.realsimple.com/. I might just gift you this magazine - Manda and Michelle - it's awesome!

So there's that,

Laura

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

The Right Stuff

Every Sunday - well, the last two Sundays - I sit down and review the workout mix on my iPod. I'll update it with songs I already have on my computer, or I'll splurge and download from iTunes. I went back to the past for this week's downloads:

Run-DMC: It's Tricky, Walk This Way, Run's House, Beats to the Rhyme

Kris Kross: Jump

Naughty by Nature: Uptown Anthem

New Kids on the Block: You Got It (The Right Stuff), Please Don't Go Girl, This One's for the Children, Cover Girl, Step by Step, Hangin' Tough

Yeah, I DL'd NKOTB. For real. I heard mention that they were getting back together, and I thought, "Damn, some of those old songs would be great to work out to. They'd make me laugh and lift my spirits."


And I love them.


Other reasons for buying their songs are five-fold:

Step One: We can have lots of fun.

Step Two: There's so much we can do.

Step Three: It's just you and me.

Step Four: I can give you more.

Step Five: Don't you know that the time has arrived?


Hearing these songs brings me back to 1990 when we visited Tim and Ann (the young, hip uncle and aunt) in Boston at the height of NKOTB's fame. I was barely nine years old, so I think their sex appeal was beyond me. However, I do remember that Manda had a little Tiger Beat poster of them on the back of our bedroom door. If I remember correctly, she was into Jonathan, the shy, quiet one. (Who was dating Tiffany at the time - squeeeal!) I think Steph was a Jordan fan. I know someone - maybe Rita? - had a thang for little Joey, who always wore that hat with a hole in the top. Whose castrato on "Please Don't Go Girl" had everyone peeing in their pants; just the opposite effect his lyrics intended I assume. I had a thing for the bad-boy scuzzball Donnie - because I always fell for the bad boy. Sigh...still do.


And nobody liked Danny. Danny Wood looked like a monkey. I said this earlier today, and my friend Shana and I said this at the same time. Apparently his features were universally categorized as apelike.


I think Danny was the bass. Why is it the bass is the least attractive of all vocalists? Boyz II Men's Michael McCary is the guy people least remember, because he's not the hot one, he's not the goofy one, and he's not the other one in glasses. N'Sync's Lance Bass would be nothing if it wasn't for coming out of the closet - thus making him unattractive to women. And though I have a thing for bass players, the late John Entwistle of The Who wasn't the one girls got wet over. I mean, most people recognize the names Daltrey, Townshend and Keith Moon. I'm sure there were reporters that said, "Who?" when Entwistle passed. And for every twenty of those reporters, there were probably seven music geeks that said, "Exactly."

Sorry, that's one of my dad's jokes.


Anyway...the NKOTB songs bring me back to the Neon Revolution of the early 90's. Remember how everyone had neon green shoes and those ghastly hot pink painter's caps? Yeah. The black & white checkerboard pattern was back. NKOTB shirts looked like they were splashed with highlighters, but you had to have one to look like you were with it.


They had a cartoon. Their bodyguard's name was Biscuit.


My cousin Shane and I would play "talent show" on my grandma's picnic table, with the vacuum cleaner as the mic stand. I would choose to sing NKOTB jams, while Shane went for the more masculine "Ice Ice Baby," and Bruce Springstein. I think he sang along to "Step by Step" with me. At least he must've done "Hangin' Tough." I did make him play Genies with me, so I'm sure I convinced him to sing a girly song at one point.


Tim and Ann sent Manda and I a VHS tape with their Boston concert. The Mother's Day when Dusty got in that bad bike accident at Gram's, Rita and I went over to my house to watch the tape. On the way back, we blew snot-rockets while walking through the field, and it was the funniest thing ever. Then we got back to Gram's, and Dusty had been taken away by an ambulance. Shane was in hysterics because he thought his best friend was going to die!


Look what NKOTB helps me remember!


Mom took Manda and one of her friends - either Karri Meyer or Betsy Hamilton - to Evansville for the NKOTB concert. In the meantime, Mom took me to Showbiz Pizza and I got a pencil pouch with the tickets I won during Skeeball.

Don't know Showbiz Pizza? Um, it's only the predecessor to Chuck E. Cheese...with a way creepier mascot. I don't think they could get away with a mascot like this today.





Nuclear Family, ca. 1991


When we picked up Manda and her friend, they were squealing about how some girl from school got to put her head on Jordan's abs! Squeee! That's what I remember anyway.

NKOTB, do you remember me?


So there's that,


Laura

Monday, February 4, 2008

First Installment

All right, I didn't weigh myself this week because I've been doing some pre-menstrual munching (and that sounds gross - think about it), so I didn't want to be counterproductive and get depressed at a weigh-in. I feel I maintained this week, though.





I did, however, invest in my first Le Creuset piece this weekend. I decided I deserved it; I came in to work Friday even though the offices were closed due to snow. I had to finish a big project, and I'd pretty much resigned myself to come in anyway - snow day or not. I got the project done with zeal...and ended up heading home at 6:30 pm. So I thought I deserved a little reward.



I bought the cherry red stoneware pitcher! Isn't it beautiful? I had some people over on Saturday, and I offered them wine, cheese, fruit, and iced water with lemons in my beautiful pitcher. I decided I would fill it up with lemons and water when I got home and drink out of wine glasses (or "sip of the chalice," for those in the know) for the next week, as a treat. Yay!


So there's that,


Laura

Okay Manda, Fine, Whatever...

My precious big sister Amanda doesn't like my recipe posts as much as the others, so I figured she'd like that I will post no recipes this week.  She's not so much into cooking; this is the woman who prepared gummy spaghetti for me once as a child.  Though her boxed macaroni and cheese skills were always top notch.  And you couldn't keep this girl from forcing open a can of corn or creamed corn and eating it directly from its source, to my great disgust.  Seriously?  I remember when we couldn't find the can-opener at Gram's once, and she and Steph tried to bust into a can using a knife.  You know what they say, "Safety...third."
 
She's not one for finer food prep.  Don't get me wrong - she could probably go on tour for her skills at preparing "Suddenly Salad" (she puts halved grape tomatoes in with the Bacon Ranch pasta mix - delicious!), and she once made Rice Krispies Treats and threw flour on her face to make it look like she'd been slaving all day at it.  Girlfriend's the queen of quick prep.   
 
So no recipes this week.  Why?  I decided to soup it up for the next two weeks.  After paying rent and bills, and investing in the large batch of paella, I thought it might be more cost-effective if I tried out all the new canned soups that are out there.  Today I'm pairing Amy's Organic Creamy Tomato Bisque with a quick sandwich I made out of whole wheat bread and gouda and manchego cheese bits from entertaining this weekend.  I just need to put some margarine on the bread and pop it in the toaster oven!
 
I'm trying out some new flavors found in the uppity grocery:  Pacific Foods, Amy's Organic, and the new Progresso soups.  I'm pretty excited - I got some wild flavors that I'm gonna pair with salads and different kinds of toast!  How lame am I?!
 
More later - it's time for yoga!
 
So there's that,
 
Laura